Happy Birthday Rupert Murdoch! A look back at media mogul's life

 | Updated: Mar 11, 2018, 07:39 AM IST
Son of well-known war reporter Keith Murdoch and media baron Rupert Murdoch is celebrating his 86th birthday on Sunday.

Rupert Murdoch has started a process that could reunite his media empire.

Rupert Murdoch has started a process that could reunite his media empire.


Named after father Keith Murdoch and grandfather

Rupert Murdoch is named after his father Keith Murdoch and his maternal grandfather Rupert Greene. His full name is Keith Rupert Murdoch but he decided to use only Rupert Murdoch in later years.

Rupert always had a keen interest in the business from his early teens. He used to catch rabbits and sold their fur. He has also managed to horse dung to farmers.

Murdoch worked part-time at the Melbourne Herald. He studied Philosophy, Politics, and Economics at Worcester College, Oxford in England, where he supported the Labour Party, stood for Secretary of the Labour Club and managed Oxford Student Publications Limited, the publishing house of Cherwell.

Inventing modern tabloid

Murdoch took charge of his family business when he was 21 after his father's death. He then expanded his family business buying Sunday Times, Western Australia and over the year he went ahead acquiring more suburban and provincial newspapers.

As Murdoch acquired newspapers and called an inventor of modern tabloids as he developed a pattern to attract viewers with increasing sports news and less focus on hard news, scandal coverage with eye-catching headlines.

One of the biggest failures of Murdoch's career

Murdoch purchased My Space in 2005 for $580 million when it was at the height of its success.

MySpace amped up its video offerings in 2006 that time was confident that it would be bigger than rival YouTube in within 60 days.

Unfortunately for Murdoch, the site dwindled after Facebook rose to popularity.

News Corp sold My Space in 2011 for approximately $35 million - a significantly smaller figure than he purchased it for.

He has also shown interest in buying Twitter in the past.

World's first iPad-only daily newspaper

Murdoch invested $30 million dollars in building a first daily app that people can subscribe for 99 cents a week; which was a big and risky experiment at that time.

But as the app didn't perform as per his expectation, he closed it in 2012 which led to the termination of many of his employees.

In 2012 publisher announced, "unfortunately we have not been able to build a big enough audience fast enough to make our business model work".

Reputation damage after 2011 scandal

A news broke in 2011 that reporters of Murdoch's 'The Sun' and 'News of the World' hacked voicemails of murder victims' families and political figures which had hurt his public image on a very massive level.

He later apologised to the victims' families in a private meeting.

Later some tapes came into the light in which he was recorded saying that practice of "writers bribing police officers was common for British media" after he had already testified that he had no knowledge of such actions by his employees.

Reported dead by his own newspaper

The day before Murdoch, his son James and former CEO Rebekah Brooks were to give testimony about the phone-hacking scandal, digital vigilante groups Anonymous and LulzSec hacked the News Corp-owned The Sun website and posted an article on its homepage claiming that Murdoch had died from a drug overdose.

The Simpsons

Rupert Murdoch has appeared on 'The Simpsons' in which he is already a topic of many jokes that too twice as himself.

In the first episode, Murdoch's entrance line was: 'I'm Rupert Murdoch, the billionaire tyrant, and this is my skybox'.

Murdoch voices himself in two episodes, "Sunday, Cruddy Sunday" and "Judge Me Tender".